Hidden Japan: Secret Spots in you Must Visit

by Amy

Japan has many great places to visit just off the beaten path. The top 10 best hidden spots in Japan are Yajima Taiken Koryukan (sado), Ashikaga flower park, Yakushima island, Iya valley, Blue pond, Otaru canal, Aoshima (cat island), Ryusendo cave, Mount Koya and Farm Tomita. When you visit Japan, make sure you don't just visit Tokyo. Why not check out one of these places and travel Japan like a local. Japan is an island country surrounded by lots of smaller islands that are incredibly beautiful and filled with nature. Whether you are a first time visitor to Japan or not, these places are worth a visit.

Yajima Taiken Koryukan


Tour an inlet by tarai bune (tub boat). Enjoy your time on the gently undulating sea
Head out into the waters of the inlet by tarai bune which originated in Sado. There is the enchanting view of two small islands and the red arched bridge, and on good days, you can enjoy the crystal blue sea.

A 10-minute ride on the tarai bune leisurely sailing on the bay In the port town of Ogi at the southern end of Sado Island, you can try sailing in tarai bune which first originated in the area. On the tarai bune of the Yajima Taiken Koryukan, you can enjoy the rich natural scenery of an inlet with gentle waves, a vermilion arched bridge and the islands of Yajima and Kyojima. The slowly moving tubs are small but very stable, and the strangeness of sailing in such boats is oddly pleasant. It’s a short cruise at 10 minutes but with the sim...

more information

Business hours
- Everyday (8:00 AM ~ 5:00 PM )
Phone
0259-86-2992
Price
- Adult: 500 JPY
- Child: 300 JPY
Website
www.visitsado.com

Ashikaga Flower Park

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

A floral theme park made famous from its Giant Wisteria Festival which draws 500,000 visitors
Japan’s largest wisteria garden with more than 350 wisteria trees proudly blooming. Flowers such as roses and hydrangea can be enjoyed all year round, and it was even chosen as one of the Nine Dream Tourist Destinations in the World by CNN.

Paradises that are visited by 8 floral seasons during the year Ashikaga Flower Park which has become famous for its wisteria blooms has more than 350 wisteria trees on its huge 92000㎡ grounds. The year is divided into 8 seasons with a floral theme which begins with winter peony in early January, so that flowering plants such as wisteria, hydrangeas, irises and flowers can be enjoyed all throughout the year. During this time, the Giant Wisteria Festival which takes place from late April to May is popular, attracting more than 500,000 people an...

more information

Business hours
- Everyday
Dependent on the season so please check the homepage
Phone
0284-91-4939
Price
Since the fees will vary due to blossoming conditions, please refer to the homepage
Website
www.ashikaga.co.jp

Yakushima Island

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

A mysterious island with a large ancient forest
Beginning with a 7200-year-old Jomonsugi cedar tree, 90% of the island is covered in long-lived Yakusugi cedars and moss which has earned Yakushima the status of a World Heritage site. You will want to participate in trekking in full gear.

Yakushima, a World Heritage island with an ancient forest Yakushima is a World Heritage island. Beginning with the 7200-year-old Jomonsugi cedar tree which is the symbol for the island, lush and beautiful nature continues to flourish. 107.47 sq. km. or 21% of the total area of Yakushima has been registered as a World Heritage site. The roughly disc-shaped island measures some 130km in its circumference and has Kyushu’s highest peak, Mt. Miyanoura, at 1935m, with mountains in the 1,000m-1,900m range covering most of the island so that th...

more information

Phone
0997-49-4010
Price
Varies depending on the facility
Website
en.wikipedia.org

Iya Valley

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

Known as one of Japan’s Three Secluded Regions, this is a V-shaped valley with beautiful greenery and fall foliage
Iya Valley is a remote area in Shikoku which contains one of Japan’s last remaining unspoiled landscapes. The naturally-created valley carved out from the rapids is overwhelming in its beauty. You will want to visit the fresh leaves of early summer and the beautiful autumn foliage.

A Shikoku landscape carved out by rich nature The V-shaped valley continues on for its total length of 10km along the Iya River, a tributary of the Yoshino River located in Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture. There are lush forests due to the high level of precipitation in the area, and since the valley has cliffs which soar for several hundred meters, it has become popular as one of Japan’s Three Secluded Regions which retains a largely unspoiled landscape. Access to the area is not easy so rental car is convenient. There are few train...

more information

Phone
0120-404-344
Price
- Free
Varies depending on the facility
A regular tourist bus service going around Shikoku can be reserved ahead of time (adults: 7500 yen) which regularly visits the main tourist places of Iya and Oboke. It is very convenient since the cost includes lunc
Website
www.miyoshinavi.jp

Blue Pond

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

This mystical pond whose appearance changes depending on the season and the angle of light is a hidden must-see spot
Within the natural and hilly Biei area, this is a prominent tourist spot. Truly one of the hidden scenic sites whose entry was restricted up to 2010.

A mystical pond which shines in blue The town of Biei in Hokkaido where the Blue Pond is located is a place where you can feel the great outdoors of the prefecture through its rolling hills. Along with the Furano district, Biei is a popular area that is a member of The Association of The Most Beautiful Villages in Japan. The town has many tourist spots such as magnificent Mt. Tokachi which have been blessed by nature and are very relaxing. The Blue Pond is one other such site. It is a body of water that was created from a dam which was built...

more information

Price
- Free
Website
www.biei-hokkaido.jp

Otaru Canal

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

Recommended for the night lighting which brings a warm atmosphere
Active as the gateway into a developing Hokkaido from 1923, even now, facilities like restaurants have been revived in their original form. Otaru Canal is also known as the venue for the Snow Light Path Festival.

You can feel the atmosphere of a trip back through time During the age of Hokkaido’s development, ships being able to make deliveries directly to the warehouses began with Otaru Canal. Built from offshore reclamation, the canal makes a gentle curve with a total length of 1140m. The former waterway was halved, and currently, it is now a walking path and boulevard garden. In the surrounding area, there is Canal Plaza with stores where you can purchase special products of Otaru, and facilities such as the Otaru Civic Museum. Also, you ca...

more information

Price
- Free
Website
translate.google.co.jp

Aoshima (Cat Island)

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

The small island in the Seto Inland Sea has a human population of 15 compared to the far larger feline population of 100 to make a cat paradise
Aoshima has become an island of cats due to natural reproduction and human depopulation. Meet these very amiable cats and spend a relaxing time with them.

Aoshima, a paradise for cats Aoshima is a small island that is located in the Seto Inland Sea within Nagahama-cho Ohsuji City in Ehime Prefecture. With an area comparable to Tokyo Dome, cats started to reproduce naturally on the island from around the year 2000, and currently there are about 100 cats living with 15 people in an area which is a must-see place for cat lovers. It was introduced on the Internet and TV as a cat’s paradise in 2014 and the island became an overnight sensation. Although in the 1940s there were as many as 880 res...

more information

Business hours
- Everyday
Boats to Aoshima
Outbound
Departing 8am – Arriving 8:35am
Departing 2:30pm – Arriving 3:05pm
Return trip
Departing 4:15pm – Arriving 4:50pm

Phone
0893-52-2700
Price
- Adult: 1360 JPY
- Child: 680 JPY
※Round-trip tickets for the boat trip

Ryusendo

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

A limestone cave with a deep blue, clear and tranquil lake of mystery
Passing through the limestone cave and the roosts of bats, you go further deeper until you finally reach the underground lake which boasts the one of the world’s clearest and deepest waters as it shines like a deep blue jewel.

A beautiful limestone cave with an underground lake that shines Dragon Blue Ryusendo, which counts itself as one of Japan’s Three Major Limestone Caves, is famous for its underground lake which glows an eye-opening lovely blue color and has some of the world’s deepest and clearest waters. Up to now, the cave is known to be 3600m deep of which 700m are open to the public, but there are ongoing investigations, and one theory goes that it may exceed 5000m. Also, there are 8 underground lakes that have been discovered of which 3 are op...

more information

Business hours
- Everyday (8:30 AM ~ 5:00 PM )
May-September 8:30am-6:00pm October-April 8:30am-5:00pm
Phone
0194  -22-2566
Price
- Adult: 1000 JPY
- Child: 500 JPY
Website
www.japan-iwate.info

Farm Tomita

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

Enjoy the spectacular view of Japan’s largest lavender field
Hokkaido’s leading tourist spot where you can enjoy the entire day admiring the 15-hectare lavender field and cultivated flowers, along with delicious cuisine making use of local ingredients.

Japan’s No. 1 lavender field Furano City in the center of Hokkaido is especially famous for its lavender and every year, numerous tourists come and visit for that wonderful scent and view. Farm Tomita is renowned for having the largest lavender field in the Furano area. Boasting a wide 15 hectares, the peak time is in July and so the journey to the farm is notable for its traffic jams. Also, the farm’s Traditional Lavender Field has the longest history of its type in Japan. Its grand landscape unfurls like a violet carpet and the...

more information

Business hours
- Everyday (9:30 AM ~ 4:30 PM )
Phone
0167-39-3939
Price
- Free
Website
www.farm-tomita.co.jp

Farm Tomita

Top 10 Best Hidden Spots in Japan you Must Visit

Photo by Planetyze

Enjoy the spectacular view of Japan’s largest lavender field
Hokkaido’s leading tourist spot where you can enjoy the entire day admiring the 15-hectare lavender field and cultivated flowers, along with delicious cuisine making use of local ingredients.

Japan’s No. 1 lavender field Furano City in the center of Hokkaido is especially famous for its lavender and every year, numerous tourists come and visit for that wonderful scent and view. Farm Tomita is renowned for having the largest lavender field in the Furano area. Boasting a wide 15 hectares, the peak time is in July and so the journey to the farm is notable for its traffic jams. Also, the farm’s Traditional Lavender Field has the longest history of its type in Japan. Its grand landscape unfurls like a violet carpet and the...

more information

Business hours
- Everyday (9:30 AM ~ 4:30 PM )
Phone
0167-39-3939
Price
- Free
Website
www.farm-tomita.co.jp

 


25 Oct 2016

Plan your trip to Tokyo

Chat with a local tour guide who can help organize your trip.
Get Started

Recent Tour Reviews in Tokyo

“ Lovely guide ”

Very Good
32 minutes ago Traveler: Tariq -   Tour Guide: Tomoko

Our time in Tokyo with Tomoko was lovely. She was very knowledgeable and informed about the culture and history od Japan. She was also very sweet and gentle with the kids and involved them in the tour. She taught my daughter origami an was extremely helpful. I would recommend her strongly!
read more

“ 1 day tour in Tokyo ”

Excellent
20 hours ago Traveler: Eric -   Tour Guide: Toshihiro

Toshihiro is a very professional guide who listens to his customer and is able to adjust the tour to have the best outcome! Before the trip he made many suggestions and was always quick to respond. We enjoyed his way of showing us Tokyo. He also gave us many tips what to do on the other days we were in Japan. We would book a tour with him again!
read more

“ Great day sightseeing in Tokyo ”

Excellent
21 hours ago Traveler: Miranda -   Tour Guide: Michiko

Michiko was a great guide in Tokyo. We were together for a day and she showed me the highlights of Tokyo. We particularly enjoyed the markets and the boat trip up the river to the old town.
read more

“ One day tour with Akira ”

Excellent
23 hours ago Traveler: Arthur -   Tour Guide: AKIRA

We booked Akira for a tour for one of our 6 days in Tokyo. We figured we could navigate through the more well known areas ourselves so we asked Akira to show us some of the lesser known, “hidden gems” of the city. He did exactly that and took us to some beautiful temples, shrines, and gardens that were not packed with other tourists. For lunch, Akira took us to a local restaurant that had some sim...
read more

“ Amazing Day ”

Excellent
23 hours ago Traveler: Ralf -   Tour Guide: Keiko

We had an amazing day with our lovely tour guide Keiko. She is very knowledgeable and we learned a lot about Japan and Tokyo (history, everything about the temples we visited, custom, ...). She knows authentic places to eat & drink. It was a real pleasure spending the day with her.
read more

“ Customized Tokyo ”

Very Good
1 day ago Traveler: Eddie -   Tour Guide: Junko

Junko was very informative and adaptive. My three days with her were not your typical see the Sights. Being a foodie , led to some off the beaten path not usually requested places. Combine that with the "normal" tour activities it was a very enjoyable time. She is extremely organized and able to help with translations and directions. I would recommend her without hesitation. Especially for custo...
read more

“ Only way to See Tokyo ! ”

Excellent
1 day ago Traveler: Kerry -   Tour Guide: Makiko

If you want a perfect walking tour of Tokyo catered to what YOU want to see... this is your guide!! She meet us at our hotel -- asked in advanced what we wanted to see (made great suggestions too!) Designed our individual tour. She was knowledgeable and fluent and warm and fun! We felt we got a great insight not only into the shrines and attractions but to the culture and the history of Japan. ...
read more

“ Awesome guide ”

Excellent
1 day ago Traveler: Anup -   Tour Guide: Yoko

Yoko was a very pleasant and knowledgeable and outstanding guide who made the day very enjoyable. She prepared an excellent itinerary based on our requirements. We saw so much in one day. Sorry for the delay. We have had very limited internet connection. Thanks to yoko for a day in Tokyo we will never forget and enjoyed the food where she took us for lunch.
read more

“ Welcomed Introduction to Tokyo ”

Very Good
1 day ago Traveler: Gwen -   Tour Guide: Makiko

This was our very first trip to Japan and Makiko was the right person to introduce us to an easy view of Tokyo. She asked us what we wanted to see, eat and do then proposed an itinerary which we tweaked just a bit. She was quick to respond to emails which helped reduce anxiety. Makiko met us in the lobby of our hotel and her warmth carried through the full day which made us comfortable to ask m...
read more

“ Great tour of Tokyo, with knowledgeable guide ”

Excellent
1 day ago Traveler: Arthur -   Tour Guide: Yuki

Yuki is a knowledgeable guide who gave me a great tour of Tokyo.
read more

Plan your trip to Tokyo

Chat with a local tour guide who can help organize your trip.
Get Started